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Shadow Knight (3.5e Class)
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The shadow knight is a fighter that was touched by the plane of shadow in his youth or in some cases before he was born due to exposure of his parents. When a creature from the plane of shadow interacts with others sometimes it forms a permanent bond between the individual and the plane, allowing them to draw powers through into the material plane. This gives the shadow knight a highly unique set of abilities in addition to significant level of combat prowess that the knight learns over time making him a fearsome opponent.
Making a Shadow Knight
Shadow knights are highly specialized fighters that also gain powers due to their brush with the shadow plane. Unlike a regular fighter the shadow knight does not excel at strictly martial pursuits, instead relying upon a group of powers he gets from his unique association with the shadow plane. The character is able to see in the dark as easily as daylight, can summon a shadow companion and can even sap the strength and will of his opponents through his combat strikes. The shadow knight does gain a significant drawback with these abilities though; all positive energy magics hurt the character and instead he is healed through negative energy.
Abilities: Strength and Constitution are both highly prized for a shadow knight as they are close combat fighters and usually in heavy armor. Unlike a normal fighter the shadow knight also needs a high Charisma score for his shadow based abilities.
Races: Any race can come to be a shadow knight. The only requirement is a brush with a creature from a shadow plane either before the characters birth or during his youth.
Alignment: A shadow knight has no alignment restrictions.
Starting Gold: 5d4×10 gp (100 average starting gold.)
|1st||+1||+2||+2||+2||Bonus Feat, Darksight, Shadow Resistance|
|2nd||+2||+3||+3||+3||Shadow Blend, Aura of Shadow|
|8th||+8/+3||+6||+6||+6||Improved Shadow Blend, Empower Sap Strength 1/Day|
|10th||+10/+5||+7||+7||+7||Maximize Sap Strength 1/Day|
|11th||+11/+6/+1||+7||+7||+7||Illumination, Empower Weaken 1/Day|
|12th||+12/+7/+2||+8||+8||+8||Bonus Feat, Empower Sap Strength 2/Day|
|13th||+13/+8/+3||+8||+8||+8||Drain Strength, Maximize Weaken 1/Day|
|14th||+14/+9/+4||+9||+9||+9||Hungering Blade, Maximize Sap Strength 2/Day|
|15th||+15/+10/+5||+9||+9||+9||Bonus Feat, Empower Weaken 2/Day|
|16th||+16/+11/+6/+6||+10||+10||+10||Empower Sap Strength 3/Day|
|17th||+17/+12/+7/+7||+10||+10||+10||Suppression, Maximize Weaken 2/Day|
|18th||+18/+13/+8/+8||+11||+11||+11||Bonus Feat, Maximize Sap Strength 3/Day|
|19th||+19/+14/+9/+9||+11||+11||+11||Aura of Weakening, Empower Weaken 3/Day|
|20th||+20/+15/+10/+10||+12||+12||+12||Drain the Will, Empower Sap Strength 4/Day|
Class Skills 2 + Int modifier per level, ×4 at 1st level
Bonus Feats: At 1st level, a shadow knight gets a bonus combat-oriented feat in addition to the feat that any 1st-level character gets and the bonus feat granted to a human character. The shadow fighter gains an additional bonus feat at 3rd level and every three shadow knight levels thereafter (6th, 9th, 12th, 15th, and 18th). These bonus feats must be drawn from the feats noted as fighter bonus feats. A shadow knight must still meet all prerequisites for a bonus feat, including ability score and base attack bonus minimums.
These bonus feats are in addition to the feat that a character of any class gets from advancing levels. A shadow knight is not limited to the list of shadow knight bonus feats when choosing these feats.
Darksight (Ex): The shadow knight gains a special ability called the darksight. Darksight is similar to darkvision; the vision is more expansive primarily in the fact that it shows black, white, shades of gray and depth perception is not affected at all. Further the darksight does not have a range requirement; the shadow knight can see as far as he can in daylight with the darksight.
Shadow Resistance (Su): All shadow knights are more resistant to shadow based magic due to their connection with the plane. The shadow knight adds +1 to all saves against all spells with the dark descriptor, and this bonus increases by +1 for every 6 class levels (7th level is +2, 13th level is +3 etc.) However this resistance also possesses a drawback - shadow knights are blinded by sudden extreme changes in light (such as a daylight spell) for 1 round.
Shadow Blend (Su): Whenever the shadow knight is within a shadowy area he gains the ability to blend seamlessly into the shadow. The shadow knight gains concealment and +4 to his hide and move silently rolls as long as he stays within shadows.
Improved Shadow Blend (Su): When the shadow knight reaches 8th level his merging with the shadows improves. The shadow knight now gains +8 to his hide and move silently skill checks while he is in any shadows.
Aura of Shadow (Su): Reaching into his inner powers the shadow knight is capable of summoning shadow around himself for a short duration of time. This ability acts like a darkness spell with a range of 60 feet and can be sustained for a limited duration (3 + 1/2 shadow knight level + [Charisma] modifier) per day. These shadows can be used in conjunction of other abilities of the shadow knight, and the shadow knight can see through his own Aura with no penalty (but not the aura of another shadow knight.)
Sap Strength (Su): Shadow knights can empower their strikes to sap the strength of others with their combat attacks. The shadow knight needs to declare this ability prior to striking at an opponent, and if he successfully hits his opponent he does a number of temporary strength points as indicated on the Table: Sap Strength. Unlike normal temporary ability damage this strike can only apply to a single opponent at a time; if the shadow knight targets a new individual with the Sap Strength ability the previous targets immediately regain all temporary strength damage. This effect stops the moment the shadow knight declares that he is attempting to strike a new target with it, so if the attack roll fails no target will be affected by this ability until another successful declared attack hits an enemy. The save DC for this ability is formulated as 10 + shadow knight level + Charisma modifier, and the save is a Fort save.
Empower Sap Strength (Su): Shadow knights upon reaching level eight can now start to empower their Sap Strength ability a limited number of times per day indicated on table Shadow Knight. The empowerment adds half (rounded up) to any die roll indicated upon the Table: Sap Strength. This must be declared prior to the attack roll and if the roll fails that use of empowerment is wasted.
Maximize Sap Strength (Su): Shadow knights upon reaching level ten can now start to maximize their Sap Strength ability a limited number of times per day indicated on table Shadow Knight. The maximization counts as rolling the highest number on any die roll indicated upon the Table: Sap Strength. This ability can be stacked with the empowerment ability in which case the number is maximized and then adds half to the total being subtracted from their targets Strength. This must be declared prior to the attack roll and if the roll fails that use of empowerment is wasted. If both abilities are used in conjuction a failed attack roll indicates both Sap Strength enhancements are wasted.
Shadow Strike (Su): The shadow knight gains the ability to strike from the shadows and inflict grevious wounds when in darkened environments. Whenever the shadow knight gains the bonuses of the shadow blend ability he inflicts damage equal to 1/2 of his level on all successful attacks. This ability applies to all physical attacks, and can be suppressed at will by the shadow knight; this additional damage is always lethal and cannot be used on subdual attacks.
Weaken (Su): Shadow knights can channel their energy into a negative force once they reach 7th level. With the Weaken ability the shadow knight can now bestow a number of negative energy levels as indicated on the Table: Weaken as a designated strike just like the Sap Strength ability. This ability and Sap Strength cannot be used on the same attack, the shadow knight must choose one condition or the other; Weaken works similarly to Sap Strength in that the temporary negative levels vanish if the shadow knight attempts to strike another individual with this ability. The save DC for this ability is formulated as 10 + shadow knight level + Charisma modifier, and the save is a Will save.
Empower Weaken (Su): Shadow knights upon reaching eleventh level can now start to empower their Weaken ability a limited number of times per day indicated on table Shadow Knight. The empowerment adds one to the number indicated upon the Table: Sap Strength. This must be declared prior to the attack roll and if the roll fails that use of empowerment is wasted.
Maximize Weaken (Su): Shadow knights upon reaching thirteenth level can now start to maximize their Weaken ability a limited number of times per day indicated on table Shadow Knight. The maximization counts as rolling the highest number on any die roll indicated upon the Table: Weaken. This ability can be stacked with the empowerment ability in which case the number is maximized and then adds one to the total negative energy levels bestowed upon the target. This must be declared prior to the attack roll and if the roll fails that use of empowerment is wasted. If both abilities are used in conjuction a failed attack roll indicates both Sap Strength enhancements are wasted.
Illumination (Su): Once the shadow knight reaches eleventh level he gains the ability to create darkfire through the special ability Illumination. This darkfire is like a daylight spell that can only be seen through darksight and will help the shadow knight detect any other creatures from the plane of shadow within a certain area. Without this ability the creature appears to be non existant in darksight as the creature blends into the shadows; shadows are not interpreted in darksight, hence the creature appears not to exist.
Drain Strength (Su): At thirteenth level the shadow knights Sap Strength ability gains the added bonus of being able to transfer some of the sapped strength to the shadow knight making him stronger for the duration of the ability. The shadow knight transfers one half of any Sap Strength that affects a target. This additional strength lasts for a number of rounds equal to the shadow knights Charisma modifier or whenever he ends that spell effect, whichever comes first.
Hungering Blade (Su): The Hungering Blade allows the shadow knight to absorb living energy off of creatures that he injuries through combat. Whenever the shadow knight inflicts damage he gains a number of hit points equal to one fifth of all damage that he does, with any amount of damage that would put him over his max hit points becoming temporary hit points for a maximum of 5 minutes. These temporary hit points cannot exceed 20 at any time.
Suppression (Su): Learning to shape his shadow plane abilities the shadow knight is now able to suppress the spell like abilities of others as a swift action, by using visual distractions from the plane of shadow. If a creature or player uses a spell like ability and the shadow knight declares the use of this ability the target must make a concentration roll of 10 + shadow knight level + Charisma modifier or the action fails. This ability can even stop at will abilities which cannot be attempted again until the following round.
Aura of Weakening (Su): The Aura of Weakening acquired at level 19 is like the Weaken ability in the fact that it bestows negative levels. Unlike the Weaken strike ability this ability is a field that affects everyone within 60 feet and bestows a single negative level that stops when the shadow knight suppresses this ability. Suppressing or resuming this ability is a free action. The save DC for this ability is formulated as 10 + shadow knight level + Charisma modifier, and the save is a Will save.
Drain the Will (Su): Anyone that has been targeted by one of the shadow knights' draining abilities (Sap Strength, Weaken or the Aura of Weakening) now receives a -4 to their saving throws against any of the other abilities that the shadow knight uses against them. Also the shadow strike ability increases to 1 point of damage per class level while the enemy is affected by Drain the Will and any new application of a shadow night ability counts as empowered and maximized (i.e. you strike your opponent with Sap Strength with your first attack then use Weaken on your second attack. The Weaken strike counts as maximized and empowered without spending daily uses; keep in mind if you attempt to reapply the same effect the first effect will cancel prior to your strike and your opponent will not be affected by Drain the Will.)
Epic Shadow Knight
|21st||<-any improvements to class features gained at this level, including any bonus feats->|
|22nd||<-any improvements to class features gained at this level, including any bonus feats->|
|23rd||<-any improvements to class features gained at this level, including any bonus feats->|
|24th||<-any improvements to class features gained at this level, including any bonus feats->|
|25th||<-any improvements to class features gained at this level, including any bonus feats->|
|26th||<-any improvements to class features gained at this level, including any bonus feats->|
|27th||<-any improvements to class features gained at this level, including any bonus feats->|
|28th||<-any improvements to class features gained at this level, including any bonus feats->|
|29th||<-any improvements to class features gained at this level, including any bonus feats->|
|30th||<-any improvements to class features gained at this level, including any bonus feats->|
2 + Int modifier skill points per level.
<-existing class feature->: <-how this class feature increases or accumulates at epic levels->
<-another existing class feature->: <-how this class feature increases or accumulates at epic levels->
Bonus Feats: The epic shadow knight gains a bonus feat (selected from the list of epic shadow knight bonus feats) every three levels after 20th.
Epic Shadow Knight Bonus Feat List: <-list of bonus epic feats->.
Human Shadow Knight Starting Package
Weapons: <-Weapon selection for starting at 1st level with this class.->.
Skill Selection: Pick a number of skills equal to 4 + Int modifier.
|<-Skill name->||<-4 for class skills and 2 for cross-class skills->||<-Abbrieviated key ability->||<-armor check penalty based on starting armor. If innapplicable put "—"->|
|<-Skill name->||<-4 for class skills and 2 for cross-class skills->||<-Abbrieviated key ability->|| <-armor check penalty based on starting armor. If innapplicable put "—"->
<-copy and paste the rows as necessary.->
Feat: <-1st-level feat selection->.
Bonus Feats: <-1st-level feat bonus feats due to class or sample race. remove this section if this sample doesn't get any bonus feats at 1st level. ->.
Gear: <-Starting armor and other equipment outside of weapons.->.
Gold: <-Starting gold using this package.->.
Playing a Shadow Knight
Religion: Shadow knights do not have a religious requirement since their abilities are innate and not drawn from a divine source. If the shadow knight does choose to worship a deity the deity will almost always have darkness as one of their clerical domains, though exceptions have occurred. Also unlike others the shadow knight cannot worship a sun or light based deity as they refuse to accept the shadow knight as a follower (the shadow knight could still worship the deity, but the deity will not acknowledge them or claim them at the time of their death.)
Other Classes: <-How this class typically interacts with other classes and how characters of this class interact with characters of other classes->.
Combat: <-Typical role in combat->.
Advancement: <-Typical advancement options for characters with this class. Include desirable multiclass options->.
Shadow Knights in the World
|“||<-Some quote from a character of this class->||”|
|—<-NPC name->, <-race-> <-class->|
<-Where characters of this class fit in a d20 world.->
Daily Life: <-day in the life of a character of this class->.
Notables: <-notable NPCs of this class->.
Organizations: <-info on what, where, when, and how characters of this class congregate and assemble->.
NPC Reactions: <-How NPCs react to PCs of this class->.
Shadow Knight Lore
Characters with ranks in <-the appropriate skills-> can research <-pluralized class name-> to learn more about them. When a character makes a skill check, read or paraphrase the following, including information from lower DCs.
|10||<-not so common knowledge->.|
|20||<-very rare information->.|
Shadow Knights in the Game
<-How characters of this class fit in the game (PC and NPC) and what roles they play.->
Adaptation: <-Possible variant conceptions of this class.->.
Sample Encounter: <-DM placement for NPCs of this class.->.
EL : <-Encounter scenario and character info on sample NPC including stat block. The CR of the NPC is typically the same as the EL for the encounter.->.